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Monday, September 17, 2012

The power of positive napping

This shot comes from a series of pictures of school classrooms all over the world taken by Julian Germain. It's shot in Taiwan. After the kids have had lunch they just put their heads down on the desks and have a half-hour nap.

I was in Japan once on a long coach journey with a load of teenagers and young adults. I turned round from staring out of the window to see that they were all asleep. I was very envious. Presumably this is a Far Eastern thing.


  1. My class (of 50 or so pupils) used to do this in my primary school in the 1950s. Actually fell asleep too.

  2. I worked with Japanese engineers on my last project and they always had forty winks for half an hour or so after lunch. Not surprising really considering they worked from 6am till at least 8pm six days a week, sometimes seven.

  3. In my Japanese office, it is not uncommon for people to have a nap at lunchtime even though they do not arrive until after 9am (but they do sometimes work until 10pm or later).

  4. In the state schools here in South Korea many of my kids nod off at ten in the morning because they had been attending private academies until quite late the previous night.

    I have known kids who have had sixteen hour school days. On occasion I've been asked to take a one for competition training at lunchtime and felt such sympathy I've let them get forty winks instead.

    That said, it is not uncommon to see Korean teachers heads down on a desk during a break in their schedule.

  5. When I worked in Hong Kong the local staff used to do this every lunchtime like clockwork - eat their rice then put their heads down on the desk. I tried it a couple of times but I just used to wake up at 1.30pm feeling groggy and like I'd just got out of bed again. But for the Chinese it was ann accepted fact that a xiuxi was good for you - just as they believed in drinking warm water, avoiding 'hot' foods like peanuts and tomatoes, wearing an extra jumper and never sitting in front of a fan (certain death).

  6. I live in Hong Kong, and it's common to see a busload of commuters catching a last bit of sleep on their way to work.